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What is meant by 'extra' virgin
olive oil? What is the difference
between that and normal plive
oil and why is it better?
Extra virgin olive oil (EVOO) is
made from the first pressing of
the olives. Basically, it is olive
juice. It is regarded as the highest
grade of olive oil, high in natural
antioxidants and free of trans fat.
On the other hand, virgin olive
oil is only moderately high in
natural antioxidants. EVOO is
usually more expensive, but if
your budget allows, it is suitable
for all forms of cooking
Send your questions
to Christine at
for a chance to win!
Christine, Food Editor
How can I add flavour to polenta
and reduce the gritty nature?
I'd like to avoid using stock and
ensure it's vegan friendly
Polenta is a made from dried
corn and is a versatile product.
To reduce its gritty texture, cook
it slower and for longer until its
very tender. It is a blank canvas
for flavour. For vegan-friendly
recipes, use water or a vegan
stock (try making your own), and
add garlic, herbs, onion, spices,
citrus or dried porcini mushrooms
for flavour. For non-vegans,
adding cheese, cream and wine
are also great options. You can
use polenta in savoury or sweet
recipes and serve it creamy,
crispy or plain (similar to mashed
potato) with flavoursome dishes.
Why do some cake and biscuit
recipes include a 'pinch of salt'?
Does it add to the overall flavour
Unsalted butter is preferred
for when you're baking sweets
because you can then control
the amount of salt added
and how it affects the overall
sweetness. In most cases, the
recipe will work whether you
use salted or unsalted butter
but the flavour will be different.
A 250g block of salted butter
can contain about two-thirds
of a teaspoon or 4g of salt.
QUICK & EASY FOOD
a copy of Jamie Oliver's
fresh Jan/Feb 2010,